Wednesday, March 28, 2007

What are All These Girls Going to Do with a Boy?

Since we don't have any kids, we are somewhat addicted to our nieces. We have 6 nieces plus our two pseudo-nieces and nephew. But...we just found out today that Brent's sister Jessica is going to have a BOY! Yeah! Before Kyle came around, boys really scared me, but now...they're so much fun! He's so sweet. Granted, he's not a deacon yet, and I don't really like deacons, but...they all grow out of it! :)

Just wanted to share the exciting news. We're really happy for Jess and Sean and can't wait to meet the little guy!

I'm fighting off a slight head cold, so I'm going to go rest some more! Have a great day!

Monday, March 26, 2007


What a sunny, beautiful day! If I look at our $2 target thermometer out on the deck, it says it's 87 degrees. What have we learned from this - you can't believe what a $2 target thermometer tells you when the sun is on it. It's probably close to 60 degrees though, which is nice.

I've been looking at our pretty spring bulbs blooming away out there. So, I took a picture of the tulips that just started blooming.

The big flower is an Ice Stick Tulip. The little ones are called tulipa species. Basically, that's what tulips looked like before we started playing around with them and making them into what we think of as tulips. Here's the weird thing - they look really similar, don't they? From the pictures on the bags, you wouldn't know that they looked alike. But they look so cute out there! I really like them. I'm so looking forward to getting the outside to look like what I think it should. It will probably take 10 years and then I'll just want to change it all again, but...that's the fun of being a plant lady! :)

Another awesome part of spring is that the hummingbirds are back!!

Not an awesome picture, but it's hard to get pictures of those little suckers! Sometimes they sit in our tree by the deck. They are as big as the leaf buds. It's funny!

Hummingbirds always make me think of my Grandma Sally. She would stop everything to watch the hummingbird eat. Now, I do it. I miss talking to her. She would have loved to see our hummingbird feeder up and the birds eating from it. I think they might even nest close to here. Wouldn't that be awesome to see a hummingbird nest?

Let's see, in Utah, and probably where most of you are, the crocus should be up and the daffodils should be starting to come up. Right? I love spring!

Have a wonderful day wherever you are!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007


... our life can be explained by some, here goes:

Our daffodils have FINALLY started blooming. They have been teasing us for the last few weeks. The crocus are almost all done. Spring is here in the Northwest!

Last night at Young Women's, we had an Unbirthday Party. We watched the part of Alice in Wonderland where they sing the unbirthday song - since a lot of the girls said that they didn't know what an unbirthday was. We made crowns, pinned the tail on the donkey, musical chairs and cupcakes and ice cream. Fun was had by all!

I just wanted to say thank you to Courtney. She's not even in my ward, but she took the time to come and decorate because I couldn't. She's the best friend!! Thanks Court!

In response to some queries about the last posting - Brent doesn't really cheer for anyone in particular. He has teams he likes and teams he doesn't like, but he'll watch any of them and find someone to cheer for. Only two more weeks!

On Saturday, we went up to Ryan and Marcela's for a good dinner of french dip sandwiches. I got a bunch of cute pictures of Reyes, so here they are...
Reyes was in a smiley mood that day. And, since both Ryan and Brent were watching March Madness, I took some time to get good pictures.

Reyes LOVES rings. She looked at mine for a good 5 minutes. She seemed to like it. She has good taste! :)

What a big mouth you have!

Apparently, Reyes won that day!

Ok, that's just cute!

Little shy smile!

I guess that Elmo toy tasted really bad.


We're working hard in the yard and on the basement. Just plodding a long! Have a great day!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Alas, I am a March Madness Widow

Somehow, March seemed to sneak up on me this year. I don't know how many of you experience this phenomenon. March comes around, and all of a sudden my husband turns into a couch potato who yells at the tv a lot. I know this is not a completely localised event since Ryan's feeling on March is that the girls should go to work for the boys so the boys can watch basketball. Is it in their genes?

So, between Brent working a lot lately and March Madness, life is pretty quiet around here. I keep telling myself that I'm going to make a skirt for Easter, but I'm scared to start. I'm not the best sewer and I get frustrated easy. We'll see.

To all you brave women who have to deal with this March Madness thing, I sympathize with you! Keep your head up and just smile and nod when asked what you thought about that game. It will all be over soon!

Love ya Brent! :)

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Happy Birthday Chloe!!

Happy 6th birthday Chloe! Chloe is the funniest thing! She sort of lives in her own little world. It's so much fun to see what she'll come up with next!! Hope you have a great day!

(I forgot my camera, so this picture is a little old, but ... still good!)

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

We've Been Hit by the Pineapple Express

I was smart today - I didn't read about my friend before I blogged, so I will be depressed after. :)

What is the Pineapple Express you ask? Well, there are two answers.

In Hawaii, there is this place called the Dole Plantation. Since pineapples are one of the biggest exports of Hawaii (no longer the biggest because of Starbucks), you can go to this place and learn about the different kinds of pineapples and how to grow them. (Yep, that's Brent and his mom in front of the Dole Plantation.)

This is where pineapples come from. You learn great fact like it takes 18 months to harvest 1 pineapple. Each plant only give you 1 pineapple. Kind of makes you understand why pineapples are so expensive, huh?? The best part about all of this is that it's free!

Another amazing part of the Dole Plantation is the dole whip. Basically it is pineapple sherbet. Basically, the best pineapple sherbet you have ever tasted!! I have also recently learned that you can get a dole whip at Disneyland. We all know where I'm going to be the next time we're in Disneyland.

All of this explanation leads us all to what the pineapple express is. There is a train that you can take that shows you some of the pineapple fields. While you are riding on the train, you get serenaded by this Hawaiian group called Na Leo. We have a Christmas CD by them. Anyway, that's the Pineapple Express.

The other definition of Pineapple Express is a weather term. Basically, it's a front of warm, wet weather that comes from Hawaii and hits the Pacific Northwest.

As you can probably guess, we didn't get hit by the train from the Dole Plantation, but we sure did get hit by A LOT of rain and warm temperatures. It was 68 degrees on Saturday. And probably rained at least 2 inches overnight Sunday night.

Brent and I kept making funny jokes about the Pineapple Express. Stuff like, "Do you think it's bringing some pineapple juice?" And, "I wonder if we'll be able to hear Na Leo." Ok, not so funny now, but HILARIOUS at the time. Well, on Sunday, a woman in our ward who is from Hawaii spoke in sacrament meeting. She and her son sang a song in Hawaiian. We felt that was very appropriate for a Pineapple Express weekend.

Hope you have no Pineapple Expresses heading your way! Have a happy day!

Monday, March 12, 2007

Count Your Blessings

I had this really funny post all planned out. (I don't sleep well when the time changes, so my mind wanders) But, I was just reading about a friend of mine who had a stroke last week. We went to high school and college together. We even lived together for a year. She has a very dedicated husband and 3 beautiful kids - one of which is only about 2-1/2 weeks old. As I was reading about how much better she's doing - which isn't really better. She can't move her right side, she can't talk, etc - I just got sad. Then I started to think of my blessings and I wanted to share them with you.

I am so thankful for my sweet husband. He is truthfully the most amazing person I know. I'm lucky enough to be married to my best friend. We work so well together - most of the time. I'm looking forward to teaching with him. I was so worried that our teaching styles wouldn't mesh, but they did.

I'm so thankful for the gospel in my life. Without it, I don't know what I would do. I'm so thankful for my ward. It's so wonderful to have such a great"ward family." I'm thanksful that I have two callings - well three with visiting teaching. I'm grateful to serve and will do whatever the Lord wants me to do. (That's a scary statement)

I am thankful for my health. I am thankful for Brent's health.

I think what makes me the most sad about my friend is imagining either Brent or myself in the same situation. It was hard enough to see my grandma with tubes everywhere. I don't know what I would do if that happened to Brent. He is my rock.

I'm thankful for our wonderful house. Even though it's kind of old and needs some work, it keeps us dry when it rains and is even really cute.

I'm thankful for my friends and family. They are all in my life for a reason and I am thankful for that.

I pray that Heather will recover. That all this will be a memory soon. I pray for her husband and children. That they will have the strength and comfort they need.

At times like this you just have to be thankful for what you have.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Home Improving Stories

I was talking on the phone to Brent's mom on Sunday and telling her about our improving the basement. She said that Jess and Sean's basement is almost done and should be really nice. To which I said, "Yeah, they did it the easy way." Meaning - they hired someone else to do it. Leslie's reply was, "Yeah, Brent is his father's son ... why pay someone else when you can do it yourself. That way you have no one else to blame - good or bad." I've been thinking a lot about Brent's dad lately. Probably because we are doing the home improving stuff. Last week it was four years since he passed away. It seems like a lot longer and a lot shorter at the same time. Here's the awesome thing though - Brent, stop reading - Brent really is his father's son. He can do anything! And when he can't figure out how to do it one way, he will figure out how to do it another way. He talks more about his dad when he's doing stuff with his hands. I hear him say stuff like - "Dad would have said, 'Come look at my dumb kid' if he had seen me do that." He knows how to do what he does because his dad took the time to teach him. I'm so thankful for that. It would be A LOT easier to hire someone else to do it, but Brent likes it and I think he feels closer to his dad when he does it than any other time. So, I'm proud that I'm married to a man who is his father's son, whether good or bad, because his dad is a good man and so is his son.

This picture is from Father's Day 2002. All the kids went in on a bunch of meat for him. I think it's a cute picture.

Ok Brent, you can start reading again! (He hates to hear the mushy stuff.)

So, onto our basement. On Saturday Brent had all these great plans about the basement. He was going to finish pulling off the topper boards, start wiring the new plugs and a few other things I can't remember. I kept trying to remind him that we had to go to Silverdale to get his new glasses. "Yeah, I know." Well, the phone rings and I hear Brent say, "This can't be good." I thought he was talking about something with the walls, but it turns out he had a feeling that he was getting called into work. Sure enough, Lori's on the end of the line saying, "I bet you didn't want to hear from me." So, he has to drop everything and head in to work. There goes the wiring. We did get to Silverdale to get his new glasses though, so that was good.

Sunday, we got new callings. Well, additional callings. We are now teaching the marriage portion of the Marriage and Family Relations course. It's actually kind of a funny story as to how we got called, but I need to ask Brent if we can tell involves a meeting he was at. I'll get back to you on that. Anyway, it must have been the Sunday for new callings because Brent's mom got called as the Stake Relief Society First Counselor, his brother-in-law Steve got called as the 2nd Counselor in their bishopric, Brad got a new calling that I'm not 100% sure we're suppose to talk about yet, and we got our new calling. What a day!! At any rate, I digress.

So, Monday comes and since it is Brent's regular day off, he has many big plans for the day. He's been having a lot of trouble getting the holes drilled so he could attach the 2x4's to the wall. He had decided that he needed something called a hammer drill to do the work. He called a place that rents tools and sure enough, they had a hammer drill. So, early Monday morning we get in the car to go down to this place and get the hammer drill. Brent's in there for a few minutes. I can see him talking to this guy. He then comes out with nothing in his hands. "What's up?" I ask. Well, the hammer drills they have won't take the bit that Brent has. Apparently it's too small. They don't make the industrial hammer drills that small, but they don't make screws that you can get at any home improvement store bigger. Sounds confusing to me.

But, the clerk told Brent he could probably use a stud gun and that will work just as well, as long as he can get the nails. Off to the little hardware store in Port Orchard with the hopes of finding the nails. Eureka! They have them. So, we go back to the rental place and Brent rents the stud gun. (Men must name these things because a woman would just laugh at a name like that. In fact, I kind of giggle every time I type it.) I don't know what I was expecting, but Brent comes out with this little case. "Don't you need an air compressor or anything?" "Nope, it shoots the nails in." The "shoots" part didn't dawn on me until we got home.

We get home and Brent gives me some protective eye wear and ear plugs. We're really home improving now. He opens the case and gets out the gun, I mean, tool.
Here is a wonderful picture of a stud gun I got off ther intener - forgot to take a picture before we took ours back. Let me paint you a picture. Brent takes out this foot long, red thing that resembles a gun somewhat. I'm getting a little worried. Then, he takes out this row of what looks like those caps you used to put in your cap guns when you were little. Then, he puts the nail in the other end. Apparently the orange bit is to make this more like a gun!

Here's the thing. I hate guns! I grew up in a house with guns. I've been around guns. I hate guns. Guns kill. I am not a hunter and never will be. If I had to kill what I ate, I would be a vegetarian. I don't even like to fish.

This supposed tool is basically a gun - hence the name stud gun - that literally shoots the nail into the wall. You cock it and everything. Not my favorite tool! In fact, after a little while, I called it the "horrid little machine." That made Brent laugh so that is now the name of it.

Ok, off my soap box and back to the home improving. Brent gets all the little bits of this horrid little machine together, warns me it is going to be loud, puts it up against the wall and ..... click. Doesn't go off. He looks at it again and wiggles it around, puts it up against the wall and .... click. This goes on for about 20 minutes. All of a sudden, one of the clicks actually fires and we both jump. "Kind of caught me off guard there." Our wall is well on its way. He's figured it out! He puts another nail in, puts it up against the wall and ... click. I'm sure you can image how happy he was. After about 40 minutes of this, Brent finally gets annoyed and calls the place where we rented it from. "Is there any special way you have to use this?" Turns out, over the phone at least, he's doing everything he's suppose to. So, he puts in a new nail, puts it up against the wall and ... click. Another 20 minutes of this finds Brent on his way to the rental place with a "broken" horrid little machine and me sitting here laughing.

What have I been doing this whole time you ask? Basically, I felt my job was to stand by and take out any nails that got "shot" into my husband. I am a worrier. Come from a long line of worriers. So, I'm pretty sure that if I'm sitting there watching, nothing bad will happen, but the minute I walk upstairs .. there goes his hand. I know you're thinking - this girl is weird. More than likely.

Brent comes home from the rental place feeling somewhat chagrined. They didn't have any problem with the horrid little machine. They gave him a couple of suggestions as to what he was doing wrong, so .... he tries again. It took a couple of miss-fires before he figured it out. He finally realized that he "felt different" when it was ready to fire. We're going along fine. Shooting these 2" nails in to the wall. Then, we get to the next wall.

He shoots the nail into the wall and the nail just takes out a chuck of concrete and bends the nail. After this happens a couple of times, we realize that the wall must be made of some sort of harder than nails - literally - material. We found that certain places could be nailed into and we are well on our way to making a wall.

Here's where I come in. When I was young, my mom and I would watch tons of home improvement shows - Home Time, This Old House, you get the picture. So, I've always wanted to do what they did on the shows, but I've never had the opportunity. One time, I went down to New Harmony to help Brent and his dad with the house down there. I got to sweep. It wasn't very thrilling. I think I've complained enough about that time that Brent knows I'm ready. So, he asks me if I can measure and cut the vertical pieces of wood. I'm not the best at measuring, so I wasn't really excited at first, but...I only cut 1 short and it wasn't even that short. I used the compound miter saw and everything. It was a home improving dream! Yeah me!

Looks like a wall, doesn't it?

Then comes the insulation. Brent got these big old foam boards that you cut to fit. That was also my job. Luckily, foam squishes pretty well, so my not-so-accurate measuring didn't matter much.

We are well on our way to a warmer, cuter and most importantly, done basement. We will be ready for visitors any time of the year!

Happy home improving to you!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Happy Birthday Brent!

Wow, it's been awhile since I blogged. Like I said, we started working on our basement and the computer situation has been a little weird. I'm back though, so...

Brent's Birthday
On the Saturday before Brent's birthday, Court and I planned a surprise fun day for the birthday boys. (Brad's birthday was Friday, Brent's Sunday.) I told Brent that we were doing something with Court and Brad, but Court didn't tell Brad. (I was really glad that Brent didn't spill the beans.) So, on Saturday, she and Brad get in the car and start driving towards the ferry, when Court turns towards our house and tells him that she has to pick something up from our house. Turns out it was us! :)

We took them to the Museum of Flight in Seattle. This was a good idea, we thought, because they could talk to each other about the planes and we could follow around. It was interesting and fun! Here are some pictures...

They have an old Air Force One and Concord that you can tour. This is Air Force One.

Here are the boys coming off the Concord. The weird thing about the Concord is that you spend all this money to go on it and the seats are small, it looks really uncomfortable and the windows are TINY. Well, they don't fly them anymore anyway, just funny observations.

Surprisingly, you can become an astronaut while at the museum. It's a little like space camp. :) Here's Court!

And Brent. It's really amazing, isn't it??

Quite a few years ago Brad started building model airplanes. This is a Geebee like one that he is either building or has built. (Sorry, I don't remember.)

Here's Brent with the kind of airplane that he is building...a Piper Cub. His doesn't look like this yet. It's still just a skeleton.

Another thing they let you do at the museum is teach you how to fly an airplane. Here is Brent getting ready to fly an SR-71. Pretty impressive, huh? Cue Top Gun music.

After the museum, we went to PF Changs. YUMMY! We love it there! Oh, and they are now taking reservations. Awesome! No 1 hour wait, only 5 minutes. Very good. And, another great thing is that it's next door to the Cheesecake Factory, so we got to take some yummy cheesecake home as well.

All in all, it was a really day! Thanks guys!!

Brent's actual Birthday

On Brent's birthday on Sunday, we had Stake Conference. Unfortunately, Brent had to go to a 6a meeting, so he didn't get to sleep in. Then we went to Stake Conference. It was on missionary work. Our Bishop is very focused on missionary work. We've had probably 10 baptisms in our ward since it was formed in June. Pretty cool!

When we got home, we made some yummy dinner and Ryan, Marcela and Reyes came down for dinner.

Reyes is getting a lot more mobile. She rolled herself up in her blanket. Cute little burrito baby!
I love her little vest. She is way more in style than I am!

I think she likes to roll, what do you think?

Ryan called me while Brent was in San Diego and asked what to get Brent. I told him to get Kosher Salt because of what I was giving him. Ryan was somewhat confused by this idea, but they did it anyway. Brent opened it first. I thought he would be so confused, but...he wasn't. He was just happy to have kosher salt.

This is the "sodium containment unit" that I got him for his birthday. It's just like Alton Brown's - Brent's favorite tv chef of Good Eats fame. You use kosher salt because it's the best for cooking. I don't remember why, but it is. Brent was excited.

Brent and Ryan both loved his card that my parents sent him. If you can't tell, it's Napoleon Dynamite. When you open it, it says (actually says), "You know like, numchuck skills, bow hunting skills, computer hacking skills." They loved it! (And, we learned that it keeps almost 2 year olds entertained when everyone else wants to eat.)

I made "Better Than Anything Cake" for dessert. Yummy! All in all it was a fun birthday! Thanks for all your well-wishes.

Have a good day!